Shuggie's Boogie: Shuggie Otis Plays the Bluesby Shuggie Otis
Culled from four albums, except for one previously unreleased track, Shuggie's Boogie: Shuggie Otis Plays the Blues is a tour de force made all the more remarkable because the prodigy who produced it was so young. In fact, Shuggie Otis recalls during a boyish spoken intro in "Shuggie's Boogie" how he used to wear dark glasses and paint on a mustache to look older than his 14 or 15 years when he played in bars in the band of his legendary father Johnny Otis. During the same intro he effortlessly throws off guitar impersonations of T-Bone Walker, B.B. King and Elmore James. This compilation has a few rousing, up-tempo numbers, but the highlights are the slow, soulful tunes. One unfortunate omission is the seven-minute "Oxford Gray" from his 1970 album Here Comes Shuggie Otis.
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- Sbme Special Mkts.
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Unbelievable takes. Get it and weep with joy.
It's hard to pick a favorite among the twelve tracks of this fine set. If I had to pick one, it would probably be ''Gospel Groove,'' because Shuggie's guitar playing on that track is so smooth and self-assured without being flashy. ''Shuggie's Old Time Slide Boogie'' is another gem. The latter track, processed complete with crackling pops to sound like an old 78 rpm recording from the late 1920's is hard to get out of your mind. Another track worth mentioning is ''I Can Stand to See You Die,'' which features vocals by Sugarcane Harris. Shuggie has clearly been influenced by the best blues guitarists and plays tribute to many of them in words and with his fine playing. The extensive liner notes on the CD give you a nice track by track breakdown as well as background information on Shuggie himself. If you're a fan of traditional blues, this is the CD for you.
Pure bliss. Get it. Just get it!!
If you are only going to buy one blues album this year , ok , make that 1 ever in your lifetime , let it be " Shuggie Otis Plays the Blues ". Considering that Shuggie Otis , Jr was just a teenager when this was first released in the 70 s on LP even makes it more amazing . To say that Shuggie was a blues guitar prodigy is an understatement . He should have been a household word with this raw talent and incredible sound , but that was not meant to be . It is a shame that not more people know Shuggie Otis , but buy this CD and be thankful that you are now one of those who have that pleasure .